I took the 2016 Land Rover Discovery TDV6 for a solid on road stint and came away wishing the keys stayed for longer.
The Land Rover Discovery TDV6 is blocky, squared off, seemingly hewn from a single piece of metal.
It stands a massive 1891 mm tall (including roof rails) and has a face not unlike its sibling the Range Rover, complete with LED driving lights and logo puddle lamps from the wing mirrors.
At the rear are the classic Land Rover tail lights (now with LED lighting) and split tailgate with electric release for the lower section.
The interior is beautifully appointed with bone/beige and chocolate coffee leather, optioned in the test vehicle over the cloth covering.
The Arabica leather across the top, the symmetrically designed console and the simple and elegant dash dial look.
There’s that sweet colour combination, the subtly supportive seats and the JLR touch screen’s with DAB.
Driver, passengers and rear seat passengers all have plenty of shoulder, leg, and head room.
The Discovery did lack heating for the front seats (which were the optional electric powered) and, to be honest, a heated tiller would have been nice too, but it’s optional on the other two models.
The middle row seats have a solid mechanism to their folding needing some muscle to do so; some simply feel as if they’ll fold with a slight breeze once unlatched.
They’re also three separate seats, not a sixty/forty split and big enough for three average sized adults but this configuration is an option.
Controls for the drive modes are button operated as is the variable height air suspension, giving up to 310 mm maximum ground clearance.
As mentioned, the Discovery is big. It’ll wade up to 700 mm in depth, on the 19 inch alloys and 255/55 Wrangler tyres.
The size provides up to 1260 litres of cargo space and gives passengers generous head room at the front, plus some more in the third row if fitted with the “Alpine roof”.
It’s heavier than it looks, at a hefty 2558kg. This contributes greatly towards the fuel economy figures, at 9.0L per 100 kilometres from an 80L tank.
They’re good figures, considering it’s an eight-speed auto connected to the constant 4WD system (no transfer case in the TDV6). There’s also a decent 155kW and an even better 520Nm.
Although it’s a tad weighty, it doesn’t deter the Discovery from being agile and nimble.
I gave the Land Rover plenty of opportunities to display its flair for handling, manoeuvrability and mid range acceleration.
There’s a well weighted steering system that can be moved with just one finger yet has real heft and feel to it, with plenty of feedback.
It’s also a superbly planted vehicle, supple to the point of being unbelievable in its ride quality, with a confident sense of control being imparted to the driver.
Yes, it’s a great ride and handler, but you can feel that mass move about and come into play in turns and braking.
It’s a helluva car for a surprisingly low price at $69,000 but there’s something like $9400 in on road costs to tack on as well plus the extensive options list.
Fit, finish, drive-ability and in real terms pretty damned good fuel economy make the 2016 Land Rover Discovery TDV6 a winner in my eyes.
NUTS and BOLTS – 2016 Land Rover Discovery TDV6
Engine: 3.0L V6 petrol producing 155kW and 520Nm
Transmission: Eight-speed automatic
Warranty: 3 Year/100,000 km
Safety: Not tested
Origin: United Kingdom
Price: From $68,360